Maiwenn Le Besco is a French actress, director, and screenwriter who has made a name for herself in the film industry. She has worked with some of the biggest names in French cinema, including Luc Besson, and has become known for her versatility and talent. But before she became an actress, Maiwenn had a different career path. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at Maiwenn’s journey from opera singer to Fifth Element actress and Luc Besson collaborator.

Maiwenn’s Early Life and Career


From Opera Singer to Actress

Maiwenn was born in 1976 in Les Lilas, a suburb of Paris. Her mother was an actress, and her father was a director and writer. As a child, Maiwenn was exposed to the world of theater and film, and she began acting at a young age. However, her first love was music, and she pursued a career as an opera singer.

It wasn’t until Maiwenn was in her twenties that she decided to switch gears and pursue acting full-time. She landed her first role in the 1994 film “Little Indian, Big City,” and her career took off from there. Maiwenn quickly became known for her raw talent and ability to embody complex characters.

Maiwenn’s Collaboration with Luc Besson

The Fifth Element

Maiwenn’s big break came when she was cast in Luc Besson’s 1997 sci-fi epic “The Fifth Element.” In the film, Maiwenn played the role of Diva Plavalaguna, an alien opera singer. The role was a challenging one, as Maiwenn had to sing in a fictional language and wear a prosthetic costume. However, she rose to the challenge and delivered a stunning performance.

Other Collaborations

After “The Fifth Element,” Maiwenn continued to work with Luc Besson on several other projects. She appeared in the films “The Messenger: The Story of Joan of Arc” and “Arthur and the Invisibles,” both of which were directed by Besson. Maiwenn also directed a segment of the 2013 anthology film “The Players,” which Besson produced.

Maiwenn’s Directing Career


In addition to her acting career, Maiwenn has also made a name for herself as a director. Her 2011 film “Polisse” won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival and was praised for its raw and honest portrayal of the daily lives of French police officers. The film was inspired by Maiwenn’s own experiences shadowing the Child Protection Unit of the French police.

Other Films

Maiwenn has also directed several other films, including “Pardonnez-moi” and “My King.” Her films are known for their emotional depth and complex characters, and she has become a respected voice in French cinema.


Maiwenn Le Besco is a true talent, with a career that has spanned multiple disciplines and genres. From her early days as an opera singer to her collaborations with Luc Besson and her successful career as a director, Maiwenn has proven herself to be a force to be reckoned with in the film industry. We can’t wait to see what she does next.

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